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5 Things to Know Before the Stock Market Opens on Thursday, January 5th

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Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange during morning trade on January 04, 2023 in New York City.

Michael M.Santiago | Getty Images

Here are the most important news traders need to start their trading day:

1. Chewing things up

US stock markets rallied slightly on Wednesday, with the S&P 500 up 0.75%, the Nasdaq up 0.69% and the Dow jumping 133 points. But while it was a positive session, it was not without some instability as investors considered the new jobs data (quite strong) and the Fed minutes (more on that below). The December jobs report is also coming on Friday morning, so market watchers still have another big data point to chew on this week. Read live market updates here.

2. Amazon plans bigger job cuts

Amazon CEO Andy Jassy speaks during the GeekWire Summit in Seattle on October 5, 2021.

David Ryder | Bloomberg | Getty Images

amazon plans to lay off more than 18,000 employees, far more than initially expected. In November, CNBC reported that Amazon, which employs more than 1.5 million people, expected to lay off 10,000 people. The move comes after several other tech companies cut their payroll, including Sales force, which said Wednesday morning it would cut 10% of its workforce. Amazon CEO Andy Jassy announced the staff reductions on Wednesday night after a news report about the layoffs blew up the company’s plans to publicize the job cuts. “However, as one of our colleagues leaked this information externally, we decided it was best to share this news first so you could hear the details directly from me,” Jassy wrote in a company blog post.

3. ‘Some time’

Stocks cut gains after Fed meeting minutes signal more rate hikes ahead

The Federal Reserve on Wednesday released the minutes of its December policy meeting. While the central bank didn’t exactly give investors what they wanted, it didn’t rock the boat too much either. “Participants generally noted that a tight policy would need to be maintained until incoming data provided confidence that inflation was on a sustained downward path to 2 percent, which was likely to take some time,” a summary of the minutes said. The Fed is expected to raise rates again at its next meeting, which ends Feb. 1, though traders think it could be a smaller hike than the half-percentage-point hike in December.

4. Cox enters the mobile fray

In this photo illustration, the Cox Communications logo is displayed on a smartphone screen.

Rafael Henrique | SOUP Pictures | light rocket | Getty Images

Cox Communications, the privately held cable and Internet giant, will join its publicly traded rivals to offer a nationwide mobile service to its customers. Cox, which has 7 million customers in 18 states across the US, plans to offer plans at prices similar to those Comcast and Charter sell to their customers. Cable and internet providers have been ramping up mobile offerings as a way to keep customers using their broadband services, particularly as more people abandon cable in favor of streaming services. Read more from CNBC’s Lillian Rizzo here.

5. Congress in limbo

US House Republican Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) receives a pat on the back from one of his House colleagues ahead of the fourth round of voting for a new Speaker of the House on Day Two of the 118th Congress at the US Capitol in Washington, USA, January 4, 2023.

Evelyn Hockstein | Reuters

The US House of Representatives on Thursday entered its third day without a speaker, leaving much of the federal government in chaos and confusion. Until a speaker is chosen, no member of the House can be sworn in. Kevin McCarthy, the Republican leader, failed three more times on Wednesday in his bid to win the gavel, as a small but stubborn faction of far-right lawmakers continued to vote against him despite a renewed endorsement by the former -President Donald Trump. It’s unclear when Republicans will break the deadlock. The Democrats, who nominated their new leader, Hakeem Jeffries of New York, as speaker of the House, were unwilling to rescue them from their confusion.

– Alex Harring, Jordan Novet, Jeff Cox, Lillian Rizzo, Christina Wilkie and Chelsey Cox from CNBC contributed to this report.

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